Pogo, December 23, 1973

Pogo, December 23, 1973

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Pogo is set in the Okefenokee Swamp in Georgia, and as someone who grew up in Georgia this is a familiar sight. It only snows maybe once every five years, and usually not around Christmas time. If it ever does snow, you have to look quick, because it will probably all melt by the time it hits the ground. Sometimes it stays around for a while longer, but only for about a day.

As with many things Walt Kelly writes, the overall message of this "song" seems a bit cynical, but even though certain things are fleeting, we should be able to appreciate them while they're there. Even though the snow melts quickly, it's always enjoyable to watch it fall from the sky (as long as you get to a window fast enough).

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Freckles and His Friends, December 23, 1968

Freckles and His Friends, December 23, 1968

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Freckles and His Friends, created by Merrill Blosser, began in 1915 as a single panel gag strip simply titled "Freckles," though it was renamed only a few short months into its run. It ultimately ended in 1971. Freckles started out as a young boy of 6 or 7, and eventually grew up to become a teenager. By the time of this particular strip, Blosser's assistant Henry Formhals had taken over art duties.

I assume that it's not the tree speaking in the second and last panel here, but something that's living in the tree. When I was a kid, my family would always get a real tree, and it was very common for us to get stowaway grasshoppers. Sometimes we would notice them as we were putting up the tree. Other times we wouldn't notice until it was already halfway decorated. We would generally get our tree the weekend after Thanksgiving, which is why it seems odd that this was published on the 23rd of December. That seems way too late to get a tree. I guess that's why they're s…

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Berry's World, December 15, 1968

Berry's World, December 15, 1968

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I like this one because it works on several levels. First of all, it's of course humorous to think that Santa and Mrs. Claus have a son, and a lazy one at that. Second of all, it's great that Berry takes the much maligned cliche of the fat, lazy, bearded hippy and turns it into a major qualification for the important job of actually being Santa. I wonder what "Take Your Child To Work Day" looks like there.

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Yogi Bear, December 22, 1968

Yogi Bear, December 22, 1968

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Contrary to the credit on the comic strip, this version of Yogi was not actually created by Hanna or Barbera. This kind of thing often happens with derivative features such as this. In the case of Yogi, Gene Hazelton was the original creator on the strip, and many other ghost artists contributed to it over the years.

The implication in this strip is that Yogi and Santa Claus have some kind of relationship, and a close enough one that Santa would think to call Yogi to bail him out of jail. I'm interested to find out how this relationship began, and whether or not it's persisted in the Hanna-Barberaverse or not. Of course, more interesting than the fact that Yogi personally knows Santa is that the desk sergeant apparently doesn't even recognize Santa at all. This suggests that Christmas isn't a very widely celebrated holiday in the H-BU, and also that the reason why you may not get any presents in this world isn't because you've been bad, but because Santa's been de…

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Peanuts, December 15, 1968

Peanuts, December 15, 1968

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Today is the generally accepted date of Beethoven's birthday, given that we have record of him being baptized on the 17 of December. Of course December is when we celebrate the birthday of Jesus, but I think it's always good to spare a thought for all the other people that were born this month. It must be difficult having your birthday overshadowed by one of the most famous people ever, and one of the most widely celebrated holidays ever.

Also, feel free to celebrate along with Schroeder by listening to the Beethoven sonata he mentioned.

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